MPs free to propose constitutional amendments -Lungu

 

THERE is nothing wrong with Members of Parliament proposing amendments to the Constitution because it is their oversight responsibility, President Edgar Lungu has said.

The President said that the Constitution was a ‘‘sacred sacrosanct document, ’’ but that it was bound to be amended if it was not working for the people.

Speaking before departure for Morocco at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport, President Lungu said that there was nothing wrong with parliamentarians proposing amendments to the Constitution if it was ambiguous because they were the ones charged with the responsibility of making laws.

He pointed out that there were no better people to guide the nation on the Constitution than the ones who formulated it.

The Head of State reiterated that he very well understood the separation of powers in the country and that the parliamentarians were the best people to guide on the Constitution.

“The Constitution is a sacred document, sacrosanct, but if you find that it is not working for you, you go back to the people. If parliamentarians find that things are not working, they can propose amendments and that is their role.

‘‘If the Constitution is not working, you go back to the makers and say ‘this is not working’. There are no better people to guide us on the Constitution than the makers. The people in Parliament are charged with making laws, it is their oversight responsibility,” he said.

Meanwhile, Forum for Democratic Process (FODEP) executive director Chimfwembe Mweenge called on President Lungu to walk the talk in advocating for respect for constitutionalism in the country.

Mr Mweenge said he was thrilled to learn that the President was advocating for respect for constitutionalism and rule of law at continental level.

He said he wanted to see the Head of State guide Members of Parliament and the Patriotic Front with the same vigor he showed when addressing the Africa Union delegation on the 8Th November, 2016, at State House.

Mr Mweenge noted that it would be contradictory for the President to advocate for constitutionalism and respect for the rule of law at continental level when the opposite was happening in the country.

He called on President Lungu to sacrifice his popularity among his peers not only at continental level but also at national and party levels by protecting and upholding the Constitution.

 

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